Overview:

  • Russian missiles injure five children in Dnipropetrovsk region as civilian toll climbs
  • Defense Minister and Commander-in-Chief visit soldiers in Kupyansk
  • Ukraine and Russia trade gains in Donetsk region
  • Fighting continues along Dnipro, Moscow makes maneuvers
  • Air Force worries it’s facing a dwindling supply of surface-to-air guided missiles
  • Main Intelligence Directorate publishes video tribute to a special unit
  • Exiled Russian opposition billionaire wanted for comments about the war

Latest strikes on civilians put number at 520 children dead, another body found in Kyiv

Ukraine’s prosecutor general stated on Tuesday that at least 520 children have been killed and nearly 1,200 others injured since the onset of the Russian invasion in February 2022, with five more juveniles wounded in the latest strike in the Dnipropetrovsk region.

“Children in the following regions have been most affected: Donetsk: 504, Kharkiv: 313, Kherson: 145, Kyiv: 130, Dnipropetrovsk: 111, Zaporizhia: 100, Mykolaiv: 97, Chernihiv: 72, Luhansk: 67,” the Prosecutor General’s office posted on social media. “During the day on January 8, as a result of enemy rocket fire in Novomoskovsk, Dnipropetrovsk region, five children aged 4, 8, 11, 16 and 17 were injured,” the spokespersons added.

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Also on Tuesday, another cadaver was found in the rubble of a warehouse in Kyiv, a victim of the Dec. 29 attack by Russian missiles that has now claimed 33 lives.

Umerov and Zaluzhny visit troops near Kupyansk

Defense Minister Rustem Umerov and Armed Forces of Ukraine (AFU) Commander-in-Chief General Valerii Zaluzhnyi traveled to the frontlines near Kupyansk on Tuesday to meet with local commanders and collect information from boots-on-the-ground forces to formulate future battle plans there, the Defense Ministry announced.

“I had the honor to meet with the commanders of the units fighting in this sector,” Umerov said in a statement. “They reported on the situation and current challenges. Decisions will be made in the near future - the enemy will not like it.”

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The pair was joined by the Chief of the General Staff of the AFU Lt. Gen. Serhiy Shaptala, and other high-level officers at the local level, including Col. Gen. Oleksandr Syrskyi, the commander of the Khortytsia operational and strategic grouping of forces.

Operations: Donetsk region

Geolocated footage posted on Tuesday seems to show that Moscow’s forces recently advanced southwest of the city of Donetsk, and both sides reportedly made additional gains west and southwest of the Russian-occupied city.

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Russian units apparently had moved forward in southern Novomykhailivka (southwest of the city of Donetsk) two weeks ago over the relatively quiet holiday season, but Kremlin-affiliated bloggers claimed on Tuesday that these same troops made more marginal gains on the southeastern outskirts of town and that Ukrainian forces counterattacked south of Novomykhailivka, and pushed Russian forces out of unspecified positions in the area.

Additionally, a Russian on-the-ground observer made uncorroborated claims that Moscow’s forces captured the St. George and All Saints Church in Heorhiivka (west of Donetsk city) and advanced 500 meters in the area, the Institute for the Study of War (ISW) reported.

Air Force laments dearth of anti-aircraft missiles; White House looks for ways for businesses to help

Ukrainian Air Force Spokesperson Colonel Yuriy Ihnat warned of a shortage of anti-aircraft guided missiles after several recent large Russian missile and drone strikes against Ukraine, the ISW noted.

Ihnat stated that Ukraine has rationed air defense equipment and ammunition and has used a considerable amount of Ukraine’s existing air defense missile stockpile in defending against the past three large series of Russian strikes

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According to Reuters, US administration officials have been scrambling to put together meetings “with technology and defense industries to discuss providing Ukraine with US systems and equipment.” The meetings centered around ways to supply Kyiv with drones, demining equipment, and drone-defense systems, Reuters wrote.

HUR celebrates the valor of its Kabul-9 unit in a special video accolade

In a terrific video posted on Tuesday, the Main Intelligence Directorate of Ukraine’s Defense Ministry (HUR) highlighted the victories of the special forces of its “Kabul-9” unit assigned to southern operations, perhaps most famous for their part in liberating Bakhmut.

Teams from the HUR most recently were responsible for the destruction of two key air defense systems in Belgorod, Russia, two days ago. That unit was identified as “Group 999.”

Through the war, the Kabul-9 unit has destroyed a reported 12 Russian tanks, 25 armored fighting vehicles, 11 artillery systems, 12 e-warfare systems, and two Su-25 warplanes, according to the HUR press office.

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Also, Ukrinform reported, the group helped other elements of the AFU to locate and eliminate 33 self-propelled howitzers, 16 e-warfare systems, 24 air defense systems, and two Russian command posts.

Kabul-9 was formed at the beginning of the Russian full-scale invasion, drawing upon veterans of defense intelligence and various AFU combat groups.

Exiled Khodorkovsky put on Moscow’s most wanted list

Russian state news agency TASS reported on Tuesday that Moscow has put exiled Russian tycoon and opposition leader Mikhail Khodorkovsky on its wanted list for criticizing the war in Ukraine, accusing him of “spreading false information about the Russian army.”

The charge carries a sentence of up to five years in prison. Khodorkovsky is currently in self-imposed exile in London.

The Siberian oil magnate, once considered Russia’s richest man at an estimated $15 billion net worth, mostly through his stake in Yukos oil, was again targeted by the Kremlin last September after his online comments about payments for Russian soldiers killed in the war in Ukraine, TASS said.

He had already spent a decade in a Russian prison in Russia after being sentenced in 2005 on what most considered to be political charges stemming from his founding of an opposition group.

Operations: Dnipro River

Geolocated footage posted on Tuesday confirms that Russian forces now hold positions along the Konka River northwest of Oleshky, on the east bank of the Dnipro River, the ISW wrote.

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Both sides confirm that jockeying for position continues in and around Krynky, but the ISW noted no confirmed changes along on the left bank on Tuesday.

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